Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I finally did it!

I have been wanting to do a gallery wall forever.  I took these down because I was over the blue and . . .

Ta Da!  Here it is:

I gotta tell ya, it wasn't easy and it took me most of the day.  But I wanted to do it right and with minimal holes in the wall.  (You're welcome hubby!)  There are so many tutorials out there for gallery walls.  I'll spare you another one and just let you in a few things that helped me.  

Don't skip this step.  I know it's a pain but it's worth it.  Oh, and I would suggest 
using flat paper so yours don't roll up like mine.   

Make yourself one of these.  
I saw it on a show with Sabrina Soto once and have used this sucker so many times.  

Hang the picture from the screw and once it is where you want it, push the frame into the wall.  It will leave a little hole indicating where you need to hammer in your nail.

And lastly, don't get discouraged.  Things will go wrong.  Like hardware mishaps and lack of nails but find a way to make it work.  I hot glued brackets onto the back of some of the frames and stapled string to another.

This wall is more than just pretty pictures on the wall.  
It tells a story about me and my precious family.

 1.  I have a fascination with keys.   I think it has something to do with independence.  It started with keys to the house when my mom went back to work for a while.  My sister and I came home after school and ate jelly sandwiches (because we weren't allowed to use the stove) and watched Gilligan's island until she returned.  Then my keys to my car.  Which led to keys to a yogurt store that I was entrusted to close up on my own.  And onto to keys to an unfamiliar dorm.  And, most recently, keys to our first house.  I secretly wish that I had saved them all.

2.  This little symbol screamed my name in Hobby Lobby.  It is a perfect reminder to just BE here.  Not in the past and not in the future.  I am @ home.

3.  A memorable wedding present.

4.  This plaque hung in hubby's grandparents house for ages.  When they moved out of that house they had to downsize and this was the only thing hubby chose.  High Flight is the name of the poem.  Since Popo recently passed away it is especially dear to us.

5.  A pretty framed mirror I found on a "Honey, I have GOT get out of this house" trip to the local antique store.

6. Simple words to live by.

7.  I printed this up for a social at another house years ago.  It says:
For each new morning with its light,
For rest and shelter of the night,
For health and food,
For love and friends,
For everything Thy goodness sends. 
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
I don't do socials anymore and I sure do miss them.

8.  My bridal portrait that, in twelve years, has never been hung on a wall.  In my life, I have been taken care of.  The woman that I babysat for every week in my first two years of college was taking up photography.  She offered to take my pics to practice so I got a session for free.  I got my hair done, my mom picked up roses from the pricey grocery store and she hung up a sheet in her living room for a backdrop.  A priceless memory since we really didn't have the funds for a formal session and it couldn't have been more perfect.

9.  My beautiful kids and my first "bloggy" project after moving into this house.  I don't remember who came up with the idea to trace over your kids profile on the computer screen and then fill it in with a sharpie but it was genius.

If you're still here.  Thanks for reading.  I had fun sharing it with you.

{Linked up to:  http://southernlovely.blogspot.com/2011/08/show-share-3.html}

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

nothing much (besides Insanity!)

School started three days ago and I haven't done much.

{gotta love the dress code}

Except I did start Insanity on the first day of school and now I'm so sore and dog tired that I can't really work on projects even if I wanted to.  But the first few weeks are the hardest and I will get through them.

{click on the picture for more information}

I made four appointments over the phone today.  I don't know why I hate making appointments but I do and so I let them get bunched up and then I get the nerve to do them all in one day.  It took almost an hour!  Hair, teeth, eyes.  We are expensive to upkeep.  But I can't imagine how much more money I would be paying on medical stuff if I wasn't exercising, eating clean, and drinking Shakeology.  All of my hard work definitely paid off when I was hiking in Yosemite.  Sure I got tired, but I was never winded.  What a great feeling!

{We hiked all the way up those 'stairs' to to the waterfall at the top of the picture}

Friday, August 19, 2011

California Dreamin'

We're back.  From the trip of our lives.  California/San Fransisco was everything I thought it would be and more.  Hubby and I grew up vacationing in very different ways.  Almost my whole family lived/lives in one city and I spent just about every weekend at my Grandparent's house.  I never left Texas except to cross the Mexico border a few times.  Hubby spent every summer in Colorado primitive camping in the middle of nowhere, fishing for their food and hiking the mountains.  It is quite the tradition.  In fact, his parents are there right now.  But hubby's work has been crazy and we couldn't plan the Colorado trip.  We were bummed that we couldn't carry on the tradition another summer.  But plans change and we decided quickly (we just got back 4 days before school starts!) to branch out and see some of our beautiful country.  But here's the thing.  We know how to camp, and fish, and wash dishes in a dish pan, and take showers in a tee/pee thing with a hot water bottle.  We don't know about hotels, plane tickets, eating out all of the time and rental cars.  Thank goodness we went for it!

Here are a few of my favorite shots:

First stop: In-N-Out burger.  

 A little windy but I like the  Golden Gate Bridge right next to us.

 Our condo.  Home sweet away from home.  
But I know that hubby will not miss that dinky grill and I won't miss seeing the coyote walking right by

 The fallen tree in Mariposa Grove with all of the Sequoias.

 LOOK!  Can you see the little people at the base?  Can you even imagine how big this thing is!?

  I wanted to stare at this house for hours.

We climbed up 600 granite stairs and more to see Vernal Falls and stand over Nevada Falls.  

The water from the falls would mist you as you hiked along side it.  It made for a beautiful rainbow too.  I think I may have hollered out loud a few times on this hike out of pure excitement.

  We could have stopped here but they kept going.  All the way to the top of that waterfall behind them.  

After Yosemite, it was back to the coast.  
We saw a lot of these:

And did a lot of this with Mr. Chad:

Alcatraz would have been a lovely place to be, I guess.

When we stopped and took a moments along the way, we realized that God had his hand on our trip to California from the beginning.  We knew it was hard getting lodging in Yosemite but the more people we met and talked to, we came to know that we must have booked our condo right after someone canceled.  No way we got it on the first call to the first number we chose!  And it had a kitchen so we could cook and prepare all of our meals while we were there.  We were worried that our rental wouldn't be big enough for groceries (to bring into Yosemite) and our luggage but we got upgraded to the Crown Vic.  It had plenty of room and leather seats that came in handy with a queasy stomach out of the park.  I'll spare you the details.  Our Garmin was the best $100 we have ever spent.  We drove around San Fransisco like we owned the place and watched it wind us around and around until we reached Yosemite Park. 

 I can't put Yosemite into words and I won't even try.  My pictures can maybe give a little glimpse of its majesty but I'm not counting on it.  I think my favorite part of the trip was seeing Bridalveil Falls for the first time and full out gasping.  Literally breathtaking. 

And my kids?  Please ask me how awesome they are.  We figured out that we hiked 25 miles in 4 days!  We had people stopping us and asking us in disbelief how old they are.  I'm pretty proud of them and us for going for it and taking it all in.  

Thanks for taking this trip down memory lane with me!  

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